Arthur turned its backside toward Delaware Friday afternoon after drenching Delaware's Cape Region with two and more inches of rain through the morning. When the unusually early hurricane bounced off the coast and headed off to the northeast midday, it left a wake of cancelled events, a few downed limbs, and a needed soil soaking.
The storm sucked northwest winds across the mouth of Delaware Bay driving blanketing waves of sand over the public parking lot on Lewes Beach. While crews worked to plow the sand away, families began to reclaim their July Fourth holiday, attempting to fly kites, standing in lines for ice cream, filling local restaurants for late breakfasts and early lunches, getting outdoors and feeling the energy from the passing storm.
Through the morning's downpours, many in Lewes spent time decorating bicycles with red, white and blue streamers for the 5:30 p.m. Doo-Dah Parade which Arthur, as of this writing at 2:40 p.m., hadn't yet postponed. Out on the Coastal Highway, shoppers took advantage of the rainy weather to check out the outlets while in Rehoboth Beach, officials continued preparations for tonight's annual Independence Day fireworks set to go off near the south end of the Boardwalk after darkness settles in. Fire departments from throughout Sussex were notifying members to join volunteer squads headed for Rehoboth for standby emergency duty.
Meanwhile, Friday afternoon, clouds were beginning to give way to sunshine. Weather forecasters expect a mix of cloudy and clear tonight followed by a weekend of sunny and clear skies with highs in the high 70s and low 80s.